OPINION

Rakhi Sawant Loses Competition and Whines

December 27, 2007
Amrita Rajan

Did the Rupert Murdoch-owned Star Plus play dirty with everybody's favorite motormouth Rakhi Sawant?

To begin at the beginning, there was a show called Nach Baliye. The Indian version of Dancing with the Stars, it went one up on the American show and upped the irritation and must-see quotient by eliminating the trained dancing partners (copyright issues with the format might also have been a consideration) and substituting real life couples instead. So at the end of the day, nobody’s fiance ran off with their dancing partner but there’s a lot of high school clique-ry going on.

Typically, the show is full of TV ’stars’, both real and imagined, culled from a vast line up of daily soaps mass produced by the House of Ekta Mata or knockoff brands as may be the case. However, this nepotist little family of pure, virginal daughters-in-law and dastardly vamps can get old pretty fast, so the producers like to throw in some variety - like Sandhya Mridul (who, incidentally, lost to a bahu) on Sony’s Jhalak Dikhla Jaa… and Rakhi Sawant on Nach Baliye.

Now, I’ve never seen this show and I am so incredibly sorry I haven’t. Never have I regretted a snobbish impulse more than right now. Clearly, reality TV is the only saving grace of Indian television. I stand chastised. But I do know somebody (make that several somebodies) who has seen the show - every single episode - and recapped it all: the always awesome Aspi & Co. Here’s what went down in the final four hour episode as the favorites to win geared up for the grand announcement:

As the results were about to get announced, Rakhi shed copious tears. Abhishek clasped and read the Hanuman Chalisa under his breath. Someone next to Rakhi’s mum looked about to keel over a statue of Mary she was holding. Both the dancers looked like they were winding themselves up for an “Oh my God! I won!” type of release.

But bhais ki pooch if it wasn’t the competition that was announced as the winners. For a whole minute, it seemed, neither Abhishek nor Rakhi moved. They didn’t even glance at the winners – let alone make a gesture to congratulate them. And when they did move, they stormed straight off the stage.

BWAHAHAHAA!

Er, I mean - FOUL! “Milard, I object!” This cannot be! Yeh paap hai! Gabbar Singh called and said, “Bahut nainsaafi hai!”

Forty-eight hours have passed since that awful day. A day when hope died. When an angel lost her wings. Since someone pricked a baby’s balloon, brought a tear to a mother’s eye, kicked a man when he was down, stole a blind man’s wallet and generally showed us that yeh duniya agar mil bhi jaye to kya hai?

And one woman has risen from the ashes to fight injustice in the TV world. That woman… is Rakhi Sawant.

“This was fixed! Abhishek and I got to know about the illegal software that the winning couple used. It is called PC SMS tool kit. Apparently, the other couple had roped in 3-4 cyber cafes for the purpose. With the help of this software, they polled 200 votes per second and that got them a lead of 5 lakh votes over us. Yeh cheating hai ! And when we tried to send a vote for ourselves, our voting lines were closed. Humne unhe vote bheja, woh chala gaya… hamara nahi gaya . Our votes bounced. We also found out that the software was purchased in the name of the winning contestant’s brother.”

And so, Rakhi said, it was the duty of the Mumbai police to play Santa (Claus, I presume) and help them out by investigating this showbiz chicanery. The police said they’d overshot their costume budget for the year but they’d look into it in the new financial year. Nooooooo! Of course they didn't say that. They said they’d investigate in due course.

Meanwhile, Nach Baliye winner and Rakhi’s significant other’s rival (in the strictly dancing sense) Aamir thinks the best couple won and he finds it a little suspicious that Rakhi knows so much about rigging votes. He further added that Rakhi needs to look up sportsmanship in the dictionary. He can explain this unique point of view to her at length when she joins the daily soap circuit and hangs out with all the other soap stars at the billion and one programs they typically meet up at.

That’s right, folks, Rakhi Sawant has read the writing on the wall and understood that one needs to be a soap star to win stuff around this turf. Look at Aamir’s partner Sanjeeda who plays a vamp and still won, “PC SMS” or no “PC SMS”. Rakhi had talent (hey, the girl can't do a lot but she can dance), a beefy partner who knew the Hanuman Chalisa, a mother with a statue of Mother Mary, fake bobs, fake lips and fake everything you can think of. What did Sanjeeda have? She had Ekta Mata. 

So now Rakhi wants Ekta Kapoor as well. But she doesn't want to play a vamp. No sirree. She says she's getting on in years and PYTs keep trying to hog the limelight she doesn’t want to let go of, so she’s planning on a career change: a dutiful daughter-in-law. This way she can get fat and nobody will mind. They’ll just fast forward the show a couple of decades and give her a couple of kids to make miserable.

Can she do it? Can the woman best known for her pout, her attention-getting antics, her reconstructed body poured into itsy bitsy outfits switch gears and throw herself into the arms of Coy and Demure?

Come on, Ekta, give her a chance. If nothing else, do it just to find out how much you can screw with your audience and still get away with it. It'll be a guaranteed ratings buster! For the first week at least. 

Amrita Rajan is a writer based in NYC
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#1
Saakshi O. Juneja
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December 27, 2007
05:47 AM

Yup, thats the only wait Ekta can make me watch her creations (???) - Bring on Ms. Sawant. ;-)

(ps...Rakhi so deserved to win, hai! yeh papi duniya)

#2
Amrita
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December 27, 2007
11:40 AM

Lol, Saks, I should've known you'd be on top of this story. If Ekta takes Rakhi on, I will be so impressed, I won't ever be able to make a crack about her. Oh, who'm I kidding? Of course I will. But I'll give her points for being ballsy. :D

#3
Deepa Krishnan
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December 27, 2007
11:12 PM

What a fun read, Amrita.

#4
iamdeewana
December 31, 2007
01:56 PM

ekta mata ki jai nahin ho one big example of how power can make one corrupt.

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